Friday, January 25, 2008

It's that time of year again...

Around this time last year, I started getting that sinking feeling that I am a doing a bad job homeschooling my kids. Well, the other day that feeling came around again. Luckily it was shorter lived this time and I only felt bad for one evening. The feeling was set off by my oldest crying over her homework for her one day a week homeschool program through the school district. It was not hard homework. She had to write 4 pretend checks and record them in a check register. Now I am sure it didn't help that she had put off doing the homework until 9pm the night before, but really, she is 9 years old. If she went to school she would have homework every night. I suddenly felt like I was doing her a disservice by not requiring her to do more writing and math. If I made her do more it would get easier and she wouldn't be crying over something so simple, right? Maybe, Maybe not.

A day and a half later she and I were working a story for her monologue that she is preparing for a program called Young Chautauqua. The program is for children 9 and up and each child researches a historical character and presents a 15 minute monologue as that character. This is a huge project for a 9 year old and since Sierra has never done anything like this before I am guiding her through the process. Since has trouble writing for long periods of time - like more than 5 minutes - I offered to type the story while she dictated. I offered suggestions, but she came up with most of it and I was very impressed with her "writing."

Although I am still finding my way, I feel better when I realize that my daughter is only 9 years old. And while I worry that if she ever goes to school she will be behind, I know that my goal is not to have a 9 year old that can write and do math for long periods of time without complaining, but to have a well educated child by the time she is an adult.

Julie at Bravewriter has some good posts what to do when your child is complaining about homeschool work.


Michelle Waters said...

Keeping the end in mind always helps me too.

I think that kind of narrative writing, while she narrates and you type, is great for creativity and getting used to the whole process. Good luck with her project!

Just T said...

At the end of the day, we need to do what is right for US!

Both my children go to school, so I don't know what the curriculum is like for homeschooling. And also being from Australia, don't know what levels are "right".

But I can totally relate with having an almost 8 yr old who goes to school, and still has trouble concentrating on homework for long periods of time.

Her homework, thus far, has consisted of 10 words which she must learn, cover them up, then write down. I let her do those first, take a break, then do her 10maths questions. Hope this helps!!!

Good luck :)